Saturday, December 27, 2008

Maria sent me this card yesterday. I opened it while I was at chemo and I laughed my ass off. I showed it to my "roommate" who also got a big kick out of it.

I found in chemo it's hard to listen to "audio books" when you have another "roommate" with you...the tendency seems to be that everyone wants to yak. So I got to yak with three folks yesterday...the first lady just came in, got a shot and left...just long enough for us to say hello and goodbye. The other three were yakkers, like me. So the time passed fairly quickly.

Patricia..the second lady, and I, took a little nap together as we were both under the influence of benadryl at the same time. Then we perked up and chatted. She told us a harrowing tale. She was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was four months pregnant...with her first child. They told her that her options were chemo or abortion and she had a week to decide. She decided to have the baby and THEN start chemo. He's six months old now and she is struggling with the cancer. How the hell do you make a decision like that?

She gave me a good tip on her way out...she whispered to me.."carry hand sanitizer and use it frequently...we can't afford to get sick." She's very right and I have to be very vigilant. It helps that I go nowhere right now...but when I do get out and about and I will be doing that soon...I feel stronger and stronger....I need to protect myself from everyone else.

Last night Mary Anne Bouthillier dropped by on her way home from work to bring and get Christmas presents. We had a nice visit and she gave me "stress relief" body wash and lotion from Bath and Body works. Yes!

I thought for sure I would be crashing when I got home...but I was wide awake...and that continued when I went to bed...I laid there, not falling asleep, trying all the techniques I know to get to sleep...nothing worked. I got up and looked at the was only 11:45!! WTF!!??? When Sandy got up to go to work I asked her if any of the medications I got caused insomnia...wouldn't you know...ONE of them does...all the rest cause fatigue!

I came downstairs this AM...after sleeping about four hours...all full of pep. I made myself french toast, bacon and coffee for breakfast. After I ate I started feeling logey...which was not good, because Jean stayed over last night to be with me and stayed later this AM to take me down to Kohl's to pick up a pair of jeans and a pair of corduroys (all I need to make it through the winter with my new weight).

I sat down in the recliner and slowly sank into fatigue. Jean saw it and talked me out of going to the store...for which I was grateful! After she left I crawled upstairs and slept for three and half hours. That felt good.

Did I write here that Sandy got me the Wii Rock Band for Christmas? We, Sandy, Taylor, Ryan and I had a blast playing with it Christmas Day. I do really good (100%) on the singing, even songs I've never heard before! I did pretty good on the drums...Steve has to come over and try it...he'd love it. I didn't do as well on the guitar, but with it in bass mode I managed to not embarass myself.

We are going to have Carol and Mark come over...maybe play with the band. It is so much fun...just like I thought it would be!

Hey, if you're putting your recyclables out...don't put all your boxes of things you got for Christmas (Rock Band, big screen tv, playstation, etc) out there where thieves will see them. Then they know what you have in your house. Put them in your NEIGHBOR's recyclables! LOL! I learned this lesson a long time Aunt Dottie had bought a new vcr, big screen tv and stereo system...the thieves saw the boxes out front and broke in and took everything! I always hide the labels, cut the boxes up to look smaller, put them under the recyle box, etc. Or I put them at the neighbors..whatever works!

Friday, December 26, 2008 I sit hooked up to the old chemo bag. It's nice up here...a little cramped with two of us to a room. The lay-out is bad...bad placement of the electrical outlets, bad lip on the bathroom door which makes it hard to drag the IV pole into the bathroom, etc. They never consulted the nurses when they made the rooms! Poor planning...but you see that happen all the time.

While I've been hooked up two other people have already come and gone...the third one is in with me now. The friend with her is originally from I got to do my BEAT KILLINGLY cheer.

They pushed the benadryl first...that didn't knock me out...but made me feel all woozy for about an hour or so...then I dozed off for a bit.

Sandy found Dr. Lachance out making his rounds...he came by to say hi and to chat.

They have snacks here....chips, pretzels, etc. And they bring a variety of sandwiches around at noon time...but the tuna sandwich I got was soggy on the bottom and that turns me I guess I'll be having Sandy get me lunch or I'll bring it with me.

I guess I have a couple more hours to go. Then I'll be heading home and crawling into bed. On the way home we're going to swing by the new house that the Extreme Home Makeover guys built in Voluntown. Sandy spotted the roof, towering over the other houses on the way up today.

They just hung my second bag of more after this one and then they run saline through for a half hour...I'm just trying to estimate the time.

I'm going to sign off now and nap a little..

Nighty night!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Day

We went to Phil and Renee's last night...getting there around 6:30. Had a wonderful time, great food, seeing the family and especially my Dad. Took some good pictures and then crashed hard around 10:00. We left for home, but by the time we got there I felt really ill...Sandy was right, it was all because I was overtired.

A few hours sleep later I felt good. No more mice in the bed, so I was able to sleep the night with minimal interruptions. This morning I feel kind of weak, but not bad.

Marcia emailed me that the other hospital sent over info that we don't want/need about my port. We're trying to find out WHAT KIND of port they implanted in my chest...they sent over the notes from the operation! What don't they understand about WHAT manufacturer they used???

Tomorrow I go for my second round of chemo. Jean will drive, Sandy will come with. They may have to leave me during the day to take Truman to the vet's...there is something wrong with his eye. Sandy has been treating it with medication that we had left over from Murphy's eye seems to be working...but she's concerned that he's scratched it.

Anyway...tomorrow I may or may not get the experimental drug. I don't know the side effects of the medication...Sandy does...she has looked it up. So, if I get side effects that she recognizes from the literature it MAY tell us that I am indeed getting the extra drug. We'll have to see.

I know that I will be tired for the next few days, so don't expect that I will be making entries in the blog...I'll be too content to be up in my beautiful king-sized bed, catching the ZZZZZZZZZssssss!

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Well...we had a bit of excitement last night. We went to bed early...probably around 9:30. We were very tired and had a big day ahead of us.

About 11:30 I hear Murphy crying outside the bedroom door, then he came in through the kitty door that we have in the bedroom door. Then I hear him cry again...but this time it was a weird cry and I got the thought in my head that something was wrong...maybe he was sick.

I called him up on the bed...he jumped up and I was petting him...when suddenly I feel a small "something" run across my hip around my back and over the pillows above my head! I knew right away it was a mouse! A mouse that Murphy just brought into our bed!

I jumped up yelling that there was a mouse in the bed. Sandy got up and turned on the lights as I conveniently beat feet into the bathroom...having decided that I needed to relieve myself.

Sandy turned the Russells loose in the room to look for the mouse...they didn't find anything so she insisted that there was no mouse...I, of course, insisted that there was....then I hear her say "got it...there he is!" The mouse was under the bed.

Well...somehow the mouse got away....and I got back into bed. Sandy had the dogs look for the mouse for awhile longer and then she, and they, got back into bed. Truman was all excited and took awhile falling did I. Sandy and Bub went right off to sleep. I lay there for a looooooooong time.

Well...all night long every little thing seemed like a mouse trying to get up on the bed! It was a long night...I kept getting up and going to the bathroom and then when I would get back in bed, I'd "hear" mice everywhere.

In the morning when I let Bub out I couldn't help but notice that Murphy was interested in the fire wood holder next to the fireplace...I figured that Sandy brought the creature in when she brought the wood in yesterday. I told Sandy and she pooh-poohed it...of course...just like there was no mouse upstairs last night.

When I came down later with Bub and she went nuts on the fire wood...I knew I was right and insisted that Sandy take care of it. She did...she picked up one piece of wood at a time, with the dogs on either side of the holder...the lucky winner was Bubbles who pounced on the mouse as soon as it was exposed...she killed it and then ate it! If Truman hadn't been around she would have dropped it for Sandy, but since he grabbed a mouse from her once before and ate it...she doesn't mess around anymore when Truman is around!

So that takes care of the Christmas's gone, gone, gone.

I was able to drive myself to the hospital this AM for my bloodwork, then over to Stop and Shop to pick up herring for tonight, stuff to clean my uniform brass and sour cream for that chili....I had to park and walk a distance and it wasn't bad!

I still had energy, and on the way home from the store I went up to see my old neighbor Trudy. We visited for awhile and then it was time for me to end my solo adventure and head home.

I had my lunch and now I'm headed up to bed to take a nap...and then it will be time to get ready to head up to Phil's to see the family.

Merry Christmas and Happy Channukah Everyone!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Quiet day. Jean came up and brought more that looks like a "Where's Waldo?" and with stripe with a tossle on the hideous green, orange and red one; one blue one and one non-descript number. She got them from the RSVP ladies...she didn't need to tell me that...I recognized the style from a 100 feet away!

I think I'll "regift" them.

Jean also brought chili and corn muffins. YUM! Just finished a bowl and it's hitting the spot.

I got my Christmas presents wrapped...all eight of them! The pile for Sandy seems meager by previous year's standards...but I know she'll love all of them.

Tomorrow I have to go for my weekly bloodwork. I'll see how I'm feeling in the AM...if I'm up to it I will drive myself down. I haven't driven my car since the first week of November...remember I'm still working on that tank of gas that I bought around Halloween...for $3.27 a gallon! It's one way to stretch your mileage!

If I don't feel up to it...Sandy will take me. And then I'm going to come home and rest...for the big party at Phil and Renee's tomorrow night!

The whole family will be there...well, probably not Ernie. Maria, Phil (of course), Steve, Roxie, Virginia, Andrew, Audrey and Luke (from Baltimore), Renee, Austin, my Dad and Wini...and Renee's family. That's our Christmas Eve group.

I'm sick of the cold. Tomorrow is supposed to warm up...everything will melt a bit and then freeze again on Christmas Day...then melt again on Saturday.

Marcia wrote me...she's still working on getting information about my port. She's got the head nurse for the 4th floor on the case. The problem is that after they implanted the port in my chest...they never gave me the ID bracelet and ID card that explains what type of port it is...AND they did give me information...about two different types of ports. Sandy felt the port and said that it is NOT one that Backus staff would be familiar with...and Backus would be the other hospital I would be going to if we need to find out what type of port it is!

So, Miss Marcia has been on the ball...working diligently on this situation. She is still my favorite nurse (and I have to insert the caveat...besides Sandy) and I really appreciate her continued work on my behalf!

Too bad she doesn't read this blog...she has no idea how I brag on her!

Well....I'm going to put my feet up and chill....

Nighty night!

Monday, December 22, 2008

More work, work, work

Sandy had to go into work early this AM to take CPR classes. The dogs were up and fed and didn't think I should get to sleep late. So, I got up and took a shower and boy, was it tough rinsing the shampoo out of my hair!

Janet, Jess and Jeremy were coming for lunch, so I straightened up the house a bit and then I vacuumed the first floor! WOW!! I did make sure I didn't lift the I'm not supposed to lift more than five pounds...according to Dr. Lachance.

I completely ignored that weight limit edict a short while later, when I picked Truman up and put him out on the deck....when "The J's" arrived, he just went nuts, running around, flying up on my lap, jumping all over me! I asked him to calm wasn't I picked him up and put him I was closing the door I realized he weighs a bit more than five pounds! Oh well...not THAT much more...but I did herniate myself lifting Bubbles (who is lighter) after my gastric we'll see what happens.

I stayed up late last night watching the Lady Vols and Stanford play basketball...a really pathetic game. It was an embarassment for women's bball, really. Then there was a great show about a woman who coaches a high school boy's basketball team in Brooklyn NY. That show was great, but it put me in bed around 11:30.

Mary Ann may be dropping by tonight on her way home from work. I have to tell her how everyone loves that throw she bought me at Kohl's. I love it too...because it's nice and warm...and so good looking!

I got a Christmas card today from someone I don't even know. It was from the Delawares who live in Maine, for God's sake! I know their daughter, Cathy, who is a good friend of Maria's...we've even been on vacation together...twice, Disney and Italy. But I never met Mom and Dad Delaware.

I know that thus far there are 26 people subscribed to this blog...but I also know that there are lots more who read it who aren't subscribed. I hear from people via email, cards, etc. about how they read the blog. I don't know what is so damned interesting about this blog...but it seems that there are people who follow it and enjoy it.

I used to have a blog BEFORE I got sick...lots of people read that one too...then I had to shut it down because AOL wasn't going to offer that feature any more. I couldn't understand why people would want to read was just about my mundane existence. But now that I am reading other people's blogs, I understand.

I love reading Maria's blog...about what she made for supper, the party she went to, what she, Karin, Cathy and Jane are up to. Lindsay has a new blog about her adventures with Jim in the new motorhome, traveling with the dogs. Sue has a blog and I keep up with her latest adventures in her quest to get a new apartment and her weight loss journey.

Blogs are fun and mostly harmless. I do enjoy writing in this one and I'm happy that other people enjoy it too.

So, welcome Delawares and all the other "Delawares" who are out there that I don't even know about! Welcome to my world...with all it's foibles, warts, laughs and tribulations. It's real life!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Work work work

Made a conscious effort to be a contributor today. I did the laundry, four loads, washed the dishes that Sandy had left in the sink and I cleaned the master bathroom, sinks and toilet. I even fed the dogs tonight! AND...fed Murphy too!

All of this involved climbing up and down the stairs multiple times...which I think I need to do more. I have been feeling weak in my legs the last few days.

I think tomorrow I'm going to drag out the Wii and do some work on that. Balance and yoga stuff to start. I'll take it slow and take plenty of breaks.

I also have to wrap gifts tomorrow...not that much to wrap...most of my gifts to Sandy are gift certificates...which she loves because then she gets what SHE wants.

She's outside snowblowing again. We got more snow today...and it's wet and heavy. I don't know how good the blower will be with that.

I went out for a bit to take pictures of the house in the snow. It was very pretty out there. Unfortunately, as I was downloading the pictures to the computer, I missed the local fire dept coming by with Santa on the back! I couldn't unhook the connections and run out there fast enough. I'm glad they do this in Griswold...Norwich always came by every year and I used to go out to wave at them...get the candy cane they handed out and take pictures. I missed it this year!

OOOPS! The UConn women are going to be playing in a few minutes...I gotta go watch them!

Nighty night!